Essay on Ethical Dilemma

Published: 2021/12/01
Number of words: 1252

Ideally, an ethical dilemma refers to a conflict that often arises based on two available choices, and in most cases, it focuses on some ethical principle that is hindered based on the two choices that are available to an individual. Subsequently, this case often focuses on the available options, and their resultant consequences based on the course of action an individual adopts during the decision-making process. Ethics are well-formulated standards of actions that dictate what is right from what is wrong, and in most cases, they often avail a course of action to individuals. Furthermore, on a broader scale, they often reflect facets such as rights, fairness, and other virtues that are held by the overall society (Hedge, 2021).

Subsequently, several guidelines have been established to determine whether a specific course of action is ethically correct or incorrect. Some of these guiding frameworks are based on legal tests whereby the case focuses on whether a particular law is being broken in the process, and this will ultimately determine if the course of action is either right or wrong. Secondly, there is the stench test that is used to detect whether the course of action has some degree of corruption, and this case often establishes the height of morality based on a psychological level. Furthermore, there is the front-page test which measures the levels of your social morals and concludes that most individuals won’t engage in particular actions if they know that other individuals will know their course of actions. Finally, there is the mom test which requires individuals to consider what other people who care about the most will think or feel if they follow a particular course of action, and this case often helps these individuals to gain a clear concept of their course of actions.

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Ethical dilemma focuses on the conflict that may emerge between the two choices that are available to an individual, and it further reflects on the consequential outcome that might arise from choosing between the two alternatives. Besides, selecting one of the options often results in some degree of violation of the established ethical principles (Hedge, 2021). Basically, in this case, the individual is required to choose between the two available options, and the course of action is both necessary and prohibited altogether. Consequently, one is prone to ethical failure regardless of the course of action they choose. Besides, ethical dilemma often results to the need to either focus on the deontological ethics or the teleological ethics. Therefore, deontological ethics is a type of ethical theory that emphasizes the linkage between duties and the moralities of individual actions, and an ideal example focuses on the need to be responsible in case your daughter gets pregnant at an early age. Ideally, this case often relates the duties to the specific moralities that you hold (Britannica, 2021).

However, the teleological ethics in ethical dilemma often focuses on the resultant consequences that will emerge from the course of action that I choose on a particular matter. Furthermore, teleological ethics are often known as consequentialist ethics because they focus on the resultant outcome of a particular action, and they often stress the need to follow a good outcome as a result of a particular course of action. Finally, ethical dilemma also creates the aspect of virtue ethics which will influence the course of action based on the background character of the individual or the surrounding family members can also play a part in the decision-making process.

For instance, if you have a child who has become a drug addict at a young age and is stubborn, the case will create an ethical dilemma scenario as you will contemplate the appropriate course of action. Subsequently, deontological ethics will emerge in this case because you will have several courses of action to look into, and one of them will be the need to care for and protect your child from any danger that may emerge. Moreover, there will be a health risk to my child if I entertain their addiction but at the same time, I have the moral obligation to ensure my child finds the appropriate rehabilitation center that will help with the recovery process.

An ethical dilemma often requires us to have a well-laid out thinking process before making any decision. Subsequently, this means that it is necessary to assess the varying moral choices and belief systems that are available and focus on the resultant outcome that might emerge from the decisions that you may take. Ideally, this case often helps individuals in making the right decisions, and ultimately results in the most ideal outcome afterward. Moreover, to effectively deal with ethical dilemmas, then individuals should consider using the deontological, teleological, and virtue techniques to achieve the most ideal outcome because these approaches help with the decision-making process.

Moreover, currently, several techniques help with ethical decision-making processes, and this includes the end-based tactic that states that the actions might be ethically correct or incorrect based on their resultant effects, and this approach concludes by stating that the most ethical choice is the one that results to a positive outcome to a greater portion of individuals. Another approach that is ideal in making decisions under ethical dilemma is the rules-based method, that dictates that individuals should adhere to the established rules and principles, and ignore the resultant outcome that might emerge. Finally, there is the care-based method that stresses the need to care about others in an ethical dilemma scenario, and this approach states that individuals should consider doing good deeds towards others just as they would expect to be treated in return (Hedge, 2021).

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Resolving ethical dilemmas is feasible under whatever circumstances. However, individuals should follow the appropriate guideline in resolving the issue at hand, and this includes first identifying the issue at hand and the available feasible options. Subsequently, the stages will include analyzing the consequences, analysis of the actions, then finally making an informed decision. In analyzing the resultant consequences of two choices, one should consider listing the positive and negative outcomes of each decision, and this case doesn’t simply imply focusing on the number of positive deeds or negative deeds but on the magnitude of the good outcome that will emerge in the process. Subsequently, rather than focusing on the number of positive outcomes, the emphasis should be on the quality of the positive outcome when analyzing the consequences (Hedge, 2021).

The second step in dealing with ethical dilemmas focuses on the analysis of the actions, and this stage points out that some actions might be good while others might be bad. Therefore, this case stresses the need to measure these actions against the moral values of honesty and fairness, and there is the urge to focus on the rights and dignity of other individuals. Moreover, this step further stresses that regardless of the good deeds that emerge from a specific bad act, the doings will never be right. Conclusively, the final steps entail making a decision, and this stage applies the counter-check strategy by assessing the limitations that each available option has, and this ultimately helps the individual in making the right informed decision under the ethical dilemma scenario (Hedge, 2021).


Britannica. (2021). Deontological Ethics.

Hedge, S. (2021, July 28). What is an Ethical Dilemma? Science ABC.

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